Total To Drill Relief Well At Nigeria Gas Leak

The March 20 leak at its Obite natural gas site has forced the company to evacuate those nearby, although no toxins have been detected.

IBADAN, Nigeria (AP) — French oil firm Total SA says it will drill a relief well to stop a natural gas leak at a plant in Nigeria's oil-rich southern delta.

The March 20 leak at its Obite natural gas site has forced the company to evacuate those nearby and led to daily monitoring of air and water surrounding the plant in Nigeria's Rivers state.

Total said Friday it has not detected any toxins in the air or water. It also said the leak started when those drilling a new well tapped into an existing well.

Nigeria, Africa's most populous nation with more than 160 million residents, is a top energy supplier to the U.S. The OPEC member nation also has seen foreign oil firms boost production of natural gas in recent years.